SFC: Seneschalstown struggle past Oldcastle

August 12, 2012

Seneschalstown's Ciaran Macken

Seneschalstown were forced to battle harder than many people would have expected before they got the better of Oldcastle in this hoganstand.com SFC game at Kilmainham on Saturday evening.

The Yellow Furze men, who welcomed Joe Sheridan back to championship action, struggled to find any fluency against a packed Oldcastle defence, but just about did enough to secure victory in a keenly contested match watched by a good sized attendance.

This was Seneschalstown's first SFC outing since they defeated Blackhall Gaels back in April, while it marked Oldcastle's third defeat following their earlier losses suffered against Navan O'Mahonys and Blackhall.

Colm Coyle's team battled with tremendous determination and defended with ferocious intensity. It meant that Seneschalstown's potentially lethal attack struggled to find space and didn't manage to score the goals which would have made this a far more comfortable outing.

Dermot Smyth's side held a slender 0-5 to 0-4 interval advantage thanks to a brace of points from Brian Sheridan (one free) and one each from his brother Joe, Brian Clarke ('45') and a great Mark Carey score, but they missed goal chances in the first half which they would normally expect to take.

Brian Sheridan was foiled when Oldcastle goalkeeper John Weir pulled off a great save after 15 minutes and then Joe Sheridan shot wide from a good position. They looked certain to find the net in the 20th minute when Joe made a great catch and was fouled by Cian McPartland, but the big full-forward sent the resultant penalty to the left and wide.

They led by 0-3 to 0-1 at the time, with Oldcastle's point coming from a brilliant Ronan Farrelly effort, but the men from the north-west of the county were soon level thanks to points from Paddy Gilsenan (free) and Robert Farrelly who should have netted after being put through by a great Paddy Rahill delivery.

Clarke's '45' and that great Carey point edged Seneschalstown two clear, but top marksman Ronan Farrelly finished off a brilliant move started by impressive corner-back Peter Lynch to leave Oldcastle the minimum in arrears at the interval.

The scoreboard operator had little to do in the third quarter when the only points were scored by Brian (free) and Joe Sheridan. They pushed Seneschalstown three clear and with Oldcastle's only replies coming from Ronan Farrelly, Gilsenan (free) and Stephen Tierney they just didn't possess the scoring threat to pull off a shock victory.

Seneschalstown managed four points in the final quarter - a brilliant long range free from Clarke, two fine efforts from play by Stephen Finnegan and another from Ciaran Macken - and were happy to come away with a hard-earned win.

This was a much improved performance from Oldcastle and the displays of Tommy Rahill, McPartland, Lynch, Rory and Conor McHugh, Terry and Ronan Farrelly and Paddy Rahill offered hope for the future.

Seneschalstown - D Lyons; P Carey, A Collins, J Byrne; M Carey (0-1), G Sheridan, N Groome; R Ruddy, D Sheridan; B Clarke (0-2, one free, one 45), C Macken (0-1), S Finnegan (0-2); D Hosie, J Sheridan (0-2), B Sheridan (0-3, two frees). Subs - A Gleeson for Hosie 42 mins, G Conlon for Groome, 48m.

Oldcastle - J Weir; T Rahill, C McPartland, P Lynch; E Gilsenan, R McHugh, D Hawdon; S Tierney (0-1), C McHugh; A McCann, T Farrelly, P Gilsenan (0-2, frees); P Rahill, Ronan Farrelly (0-3), Robert Farrelly (0-1). Sub - V Reynolds for Robert Farrelly 42 mins.

Referee - Donal Smyth (Navan O'Mahonys).

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